So once upon a time I bought a plane ticket to a friend’s wedding in Greece, but I couldn’t find anyone to travel with me, so I decided to swallow a change fee and travel elsewhere the following spring. (Clearly this was before I realized solo travel was something that 1) existed and 2) I was capable of.) Sure enough, the following spring, I wound up with a friend in Spain for a period of time to perform with a trapeze troupe who invited me to come visit (no, I’m not making this up). Unfortunately, about 3 weeks before I was to visit, the troupe’s tourist visas expired, the circus failed to ever get them work visas, and they were essentially deported and not allowed to return for a short period of time (no, I’m not making this up either). Since I didn’t want to change my ticket *again*, and since I didn’t want to travel alone, I sought out a willing travel partner. After asking a few friends, I mentioned the idea to my mom on a whim, and surprisingly, she said yes. So, a week before my departure, my mom was cashing in Delta points for a plane ticket, and the entire course of my trip changed. Or rather, the course I planned to take remained the same – arrive in Madrid, rent a car, drive west to Portugal, south through Andalucía, then back up to Madrid via Toledo – it’s just that now, the feel of the trip, the goals, the experiences, would take on a much different feel.
|Me & Mom in Sintra, Portugal, circa 2010|